I’ve been baking a while. It’s how I first got into cooking and I still love the fact that every time you bake it’s kind of like a science experiment. At this point, I feel pretty confident that I can follow directions and make a simple cake/cookie/muffin. So I was floored when the muffins I made over the weekend – drum roll, please – exploded! They seemed a normal muffin with a crumble on top. Nice flavor profile with blackberries, lemon and thyme. Sounds good, right?
Well… They were supposed to look like this:
And came out looking like this:
Every single one of them. Aghast at where I’d gone wrong, I scrutinized the recipe trying to figure out exactly what went awry. A couple of tweets later, my much more experienced baking food blogger friends helped me realize that it was probably the baking vessel. I bought the cute paper cups and everything (pretty sure they were the 4oz size specified by the recipe) and I filled them up per the recipe. I turned a blind eye at the fact that they were filled pretty close to the top, noting that in the photo the muffins definitely grew beyond the cup size. My mind at ease, I popped them in the oven and 50 min later was not so lucky.
What I have come to realize is that the crumble fell into the muffins causing the batter to flow over (you can kind of see the crumble in the main photo at the very top of the post). Probably due to an over filled cup, too much/heavy crumble and/or not thick enough batter. As you can tell, I was really bummed that they didn’t puff with crumble on top and look really pretty for me to give my friends during whale watching the next day. Though, I must say that my spirits did lift when I tasted them! The blackberry, the lemon, the thyme, oh my! It was just delightful.
The muffins are a great combination of tart and sweet with the savory thyme shining through at all the right moments. I was worried that the thyme would over power the muffins, but it really came through in specific bites as a nice surprise. The lemon and berries are obviously no strangers to muffins (and each other) and I was so pleased that despite the visual discrepancies, I had achieved the desired flavors.
So the moral of the story: 1) Every recipe is worth a shot 2) They may not always come out right 3) The final flavor is most important! I encourage you to try these out because hopefully you’ll have better luck, and even if you don’t, you’ll have fun weird little muffins that taste great.
Here are some tips:
- Don’t fill the cups too high
- Use a little less crumble than the recipe suggests & make sure it’s spread out across the top of the muffins
- If the blackberries are big, cut them in half or smoosh them up a bit more before you mix them in so they don’t sink to the bottom – the flour you mix them with is supposed to prevent that, but my big berries still sank
Recipe available here